I’ve been a little boring this past year – what with all the job stuff. I love teaching and kids and living abroad, but not as much as I love riding my bike and having adventures. Now that I’ve got some teaching money saved up, get ready for 2018 to look a little different.
Nope, not making resolutions. I’m making travel plans! A whole year’s worth of adventures.
One of the reasons I took a job teaching here in Korea was to save up a little cash to fund some adventures and a long, luxurious period of unemployment. As much as I enjoy teaching, I chafe at the routine and obligation of a regular job. Just after Chinese New Year, my contract will be finished. I plan to spend the Year of the Golden Dog running around and getting into trouble. Bark, bark!
Here are my plans so far:
First, I’ll ride my bike to Busan and take the ferry to Fukuoka, Japan. What better way to start than putting my bike on a ferry? For a month or so, I’ll cycle tour Japan. I’m still not sure what route. Since it will still be cold, I will probably head south in search of some cherry blossoms. Or maybe north to Tokyo. I should probably try to work that all out soon.
In April, I’ll fly back to California to start my Pacific Crest Trail thru-hike. (Like in that one book.) I hear saying thru-hike is a touchy subject for certain picky people. But whatever, fuck your rules. I’ve been waiting years to hike the PCT. I’m sure it won’t be anything like I’m expecting but it probably will be hard and uncomfortable and that’s pretty much what I like. If anyone’s looking for more PCT hiking memoirs written by women, here are two that I really love:
In any case, I should finish my hike in September. And then…what I’d really like to do from September to November is find a campaign to volunteer for. Some Blue Wave progressive WOC candidate. This isn’t my usual type of adventure. I’ve never volunteered for a campaign or anything remotely like that but 2018 seems like the right time to start.
And after all that’s done, I want to go to Mexico. To Baja. To tour the Baja Divide on a fat tire bike. This will require a new bike and some new bikepacking gear. I’ve been lusting after that trail since I heard about it. I still have a pulsing need to ride in Lael Wilcox’s wide tire tracks. I’ve always loved Baja, all my life. It’s just one of those places.
My funnest moments in life have happened in that sandy, windy, weird, gorgeous desert. Definitely it is one of the sources of my life-long love affair with strange and uncomfortable travel. My parents used to throw us into the back of the truck, under a tiny campershell, and we’d drive for about 1000 hours down to Baja California. To go camp in the dirt. Once we camped next to Caesar Chavez in a campground. I’ve always wanted to bike tour Baja. Not on that highway though. I know I could do it and it’d be fun. But off road will be so much better.
In a perfect world, I will get to the bottom of Baja, take the ferry over to mainland, and continue on south. In reality, I’ll likely be getting ready to return to Korea for another year of teaching. If my Year of Adventure doesn’t kill me first.